For the first time in my life, I am in a long term relationship with someone who also does not eat meat. This is remarkable for a couple reasons. First of all, I no longer have to deal with the awkwardness of going someplace with her and declining when offered meat. I have a united front against whatever incredulity might be bandied my way. Second of all, cooking at home has become a breeze because we don’t have to worry about making one meal for her and one meal for me. Roasted brussel sprouts and risotto with goat cheese is one of our favorites. Third, it’s lovely to be in a relationship where salads are a common denominator that doesn’t look like this:
Seriously, this blog is hilarious: womenlaughingalonewithsalad.tumblr.com/page/19
But what’s interesting about our dietary relationship is that there’s an added wrinkle: she can’t eat gluten. And she’s not gluten free because she thinks it’ll be good for her health or anything like that. She can’t eat it because it’ll make her sick. Which is more than I can say about my vegetarianism. For me, my dietary restriction is a choice. And so for the first time in my life, I find myself in a place where my significant other doesn’t eat something that I eat (and I eat a lot of gluten). Suddenly, I am in the position that every single one of my previous girlfriends was in. And now I get it.
I never really took into account how accommodating previous girlfriends had to be about my dietary choices until I had to alter my own diet (ever so slightly) for someone I love. My current girlfriend has so been accommodating that she gave up meat just because it was easier for us if she did. I’ve never had meat, but I know that’s a sacrifice. So while dating gluten free has occasionally been difficult (some restaurants seem to go out of their way to put gluten in their food), I’ve realized diet alteration is something my loved ones have been doing for me my entire life. The absolute least I can do is pay it forward. And it’s nice to know my relationship is more akin to this:
Rather than this:
And yes. That’s my second plug for Women Laughing Alone With Salad.
You’ll thank me.